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Indepth Arts News:

"Vectorial Elevation by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer"
2002-04-20 until 2002-05-05
Artium - Basque Museum of Contemporary Art
Vitoria-Gasteiz, , ES Spain

The largest installation of interactive art in the world, Vectorial Elevation by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, will be presented for the first time in Europe at the inauguration of the Basque Museum of Contemporary Art, ARTIUM.

As of April 22, 2002, anyone who logs onto the website www.alzado.net will be able to design enormous light sculptures in the sky over Vitoria, using 18 robotic searchlights placed around the Museum's central Square. The beams of light will be visible at a distance of 15 kilometres; every six seconds a new design will be displayed as it arrives from the Internet. The designs may include participants' names and dedications, which will be shown on a large screen in the Square.

The Web site will include a virtual model of the ARTIUM Square where the participants will be able to direct the searchlights and view the dome of light from any angle. The site will also present a live broadcast from three video cameras placed around the Square and on a tower of Saint Mary's Cathedral. A web page will be made automatically to record the design of each participant.

The installation Vectorial Elevation was presented for the first time at the Zócalo Plaza in Mexico City for the year 2000 celebrations. More than 800,000 people from 89 countries visited the web site in a two-week period, and the exhibition at ARTIUM is expected to exceed that figure. The piece has received a number of prestigious electronic art awards such as the Golden Nica at the Prix Ars Electronica in Austria, a distinction at the SFMOMA Webby Awards in San Francisco and an Excellence Prize at the CG Arts Media Art Festival in Tokyo.

Vectorial Elevation is the work of the Mexican-Canadian artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, who is assisted by a dozen programmers, designers and technicians from five countries. Lozano-Hemmer's speciality, which he calls relational architecture, aims to transform urban spaces with new interactive technologies that allow the public to form an integral part of the artwork.

The piece is sponsored by Telefónica, Dragados y Construcciones and Lagunketa, and it will be in operation every day from April 22 to May 5, 2002 from dusk to dawn (9 PM to 6 AM).

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